Reading together with children develops a positive association with books, encouraging individuals to be readers independently. A life long love of books can be started at a young age. The bonding that occurs between parent and child through the one on one attention is beneficial to children, especially in today’s fast paced, technology filled world. Reading aloud has even been found to help children to deal with stress and tragedy.
It is important that the books chosen are of in line with the children’s individual interests. The emotional tone of the shared reading also has an impact on the quality of the experience for the children. Supportive, inquisitive conversation around issues explored in the books allow individuals to obtain the maximum benefits. An interactive reading experience can also be good for a child’s self esteem, as they have an outlet to express thoughts and concepts that arise as a result of hearing a story aloud. When an adult takes the time to listen and respond to such thoughts it can encourage the child to have the courage to speak out about other ideas more frequently. Problem solving can be developed this way.
“The reality of today’s world is that we’re competing with portable digital media. So you really want to arm parents with tools and rationale behind it about why it’s important to stick to the basics of things like books.” ~ Dr. Alanna Levine, pediatrician in Orangeburg, N.Y.
Reading aloud to children on a regular basis, 4 or 5 times per week, can substantially support them in learning to read. This is especially true if the reading is done in an engaging manner, where the parents are patient and allow the child to gain the most from the experience. Good readers are more confident at school and success in class can be directly attributed to reading ability. The frequency of reading actually has a direct impact on schooling outcomes regardless of the child’s family background and upbringing, including affluence.
Those that struggle to learn to read are often frustrated in class, and tend to display anti-social behaviours as they progress through the school system. Absenteeism and substance abuse have been linked to difficulty in reading from a young age.
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